Announcement
September 12, 2022

Fall programs 2022

Blackwood Gallery at University of Toronto Mississauga

Jessica Thalmann, cut between the supports and collapse (To and from), 2022. Courtesy the artist.

Jessica Thalmann, cut between the supports and collapse (ER/OR/ICU), 2022. Courtesy the artist.

Theodore (ted) Kerr, Living Well, 2019. Courtesy the artist.

Sean Procyk, Lyfeboat prototype, 2022. Installation view at Lakefront Promenade Marina. Photo: Vuk Dragojevic.

Christina Battle, Erika DeFreitas, Jessica Thalmann: This Unfathomable Weight
September 6, 2022–August 27, 2023
A three-part exhibition on UTM campus lightboxes and public billboards. Curated by Farah Yusuf, This Unfathomable Weight grapples publicly with the massive crises of recent years, and asks: How can we heal from widespread experiences of shock, anxiety, loss, and social upheaval?

Through an understanding of trauma as a psychic rupture, where meaning-making has been suspended, deferred, or displaced, the program carves out space for reparative gestures of making sense across personal, societal, and spiritual registers. In part one (fall 2022), Jessica Thalmann reflects on a personal crisis by documenting her time in the ICU as the primary caregiver to her critically ill mother. In part two (winter 2023), Christina Battle examines the precarity of meaning through digital collages of right-wing identity signaling and misinformation. In part three (summer 2023), Erika DeFreitas contends with uncertainty through a daily ritual of attempting to capture the Virgin Mary (or what she refers to as the “divine feminine”) in photographs of the sun.

Across the exhibition, curator, writer, and community organizer Vince Rozario will facilitate a series of programs in response to the image sets.

Jessica Thalmann: Movement One: Interior
September 6–December 18, 2022
First installment of This Unfathomable Weight. This set of images engages with representations of infirmity and care through the artist’s personal experience within the hospital system. Having to suddenly become a caregiver to her mother who suffered a brain aneurysm, the artist documents a time of hospitalization, including radiation treatments, MRIs, rehabilitation, and eventual recovery. Thalmann’s process involves cutting, doubling, inverting, solarizing, and reassembling photographs to create an almost cubist dissection of space. This act of destruction and reconstruction speaks to the artist’s desire to materially and metaphorically examine medical institutions as sites that are haunted by trauma and to reclaim power over facing the mortality of a loved one.

Animating four outdoor lightboxes, this series features a fifth image on a public billboard in Mississauga at Eglinton Avenue West and Mavis Road.

WISH YOU WERE HERE, WISH HERE WAS BETTER
October 3–9, 2022
A mobile event series for public gathering, mourning, and education. Wish You Were Here, Wish Here Was Better is a mobile public event series that makes space for people impacted by the ongoing overdose crisis—and its cascading systemic issues of precarity, houselessness, and criminalization—to mourn, while providing opportunities to imagine and work towards a more just future.

Commissioned artwork by Les Harper will wrap a van, popping up daily at various locations across Mississauga and Brampton, starting at the UTM campus. The van will serve as an anchor for visitors to share reflections, and ask questions about grief, survival, and possibility. The event series will culminate with a community feast on UTM campus.

The project is organized by community organizer and scholar Zoë Dodd, artist Les Harper, writer Theodore (ted) Kerr, and curator-scholar Ellyn Walker.

Sean Procyk: Lyfeboat prototype
Until September 25, 2022
Lakefront Promenade Marina
Presented in partnership with the City of Mississauga. Lyfeboat prototype is a new commission by Sean Procyk that takes shape as a floating platform for experimental tree propagation. Informed by histories of land and water management surrounding Lake Ontario, legacies of settler-colonialism, innovations by off-grid communities, and realities of ecological adaptation, Lyfeboat prototype serves as a sculptural intervention and platform for community engagement. Nearshore Gatherings is a parallel program series on environmental activism.

Visit our website for a full listing of the Blackwood’s fall programs and events.

The Blackwood gratefully acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the University of Toronto Mississauga, and the Jackman Humanities Institute Program for the Arts. Additional support for Lyfeboat prototype provided by Dock Edge, City of Mississauga Culture Division, and School of Cities, University of Toronto.

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